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The Hope of Elantris

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<The Hope of Elantris
The Hope of Elantris cover.jpg
Attribution missing
Follows Elantris
Setting Sel, Cosmere
Released January 2006
Annotation here

The Hope of Elantris is a short story written by Brandon Sanderson in January of 2006. It was initially released as an e-book for sale on Amazon and eventually released on Brandon Sanderson's own website.

The book is set in the world of Elantris occurring at the same time as certain events in the book but centers on different characters. Brandon Sanderson commented, "If you haven't read the novel Elantris, this contains major spoilers. Might I suggest reading the book first? This story won't work at all for you if you haven't."[1]


After Elantris' restoration Raoden sits alone in his palace noting the city's new found wealth. Ashe, Sarene's Seon, floats in through an open window to inform Raoden his wife will not be attending their dinner, because she is pregnant and "it's his fault." Raoden settles in to listening to Ashe's testament to his whereabouts during the last hours before Elantris' restoration.

Everyone has a role in New Elantris; Matisse looks after the children of the Roost but on this night they cannot find the will to sleep. Outside, many of the adults have begun drawing Aons. Matisse ushers the children to bed with threats of doing more school work if they wanted to stay up. As Matisse observes many of the adults outside surrounding Galladon, Idotris claims Aons are useless before Matisse leaves the Roost. Searching out her adoptive father, Dashe, he explains to her that Galladon is having the Elantrians practice Aons in the new form that he and Raoden discovered in Elantris - adding the chasm line.

While watching Galladon lecture the Elantrians, Matisse and Dashe are approached from behind by Ashe. He had come with a message for Karata, but Dashe informs him she's in the library; with Galladon otherwise pre-occupied Ashe delivers his message from Sarene about the shipment of weapons coming into New Elantris to Dashe. After Dashe leaves to organize men to collect the weapons, Matisse asks to borrow Ashe for a moment.

Back at the Roost, Ashe tells a story to help a young girl fall asleep, then he speaks to Matisse outside. She apologizes for taking his time to which he responds that he is pleased to do so again, since Sarene has grown up. Mareshe calls out to Matisse looking for Dashe. She warns him not to wake the children. Mareshe lets slip that Galladon and Karata have disappeared now too. Suddenly, New Elantris erupts into distant screams; Ashe flies away to see what is happening while Taid - the adult supervisor of the Roost - runs to investigate himself.

On the verge of following, Idotris is stopped by Matisse, who ushers him inside to wake the children. Crossing the street, Matisse finds two lanterns when Ashe comes back to inform her that a Fjordell army has invaded the city, and they are heading her way. Filled with dread, Matisse forces herself into action, realizing that the soldiers will be following the cleaned up streets to find the Elantrians and taking the children to the dirty areas of the city will be safer. Ashe is sent to find Dashe.

They flee the Roost, Idotris quieting the children whenever they cried, all staying close to the little lantern light they had. From behind, the harsh tongue of Fjordell is raised and Matisse turns to see three soldiers pursuing them. Horrified by the realization that these men would kill the children, she tells the children to run. Ashe comes back to distract the soldiers so that Dashe can charge them unseen. Urging the children on again, Matisse whirls around, wishing she could do something to help Dashe. He fights bravely but is overwhelmed by numbers and a weakened Elantrian body. He takes a sword to the chest and sees Matisse, mouthing "run" to her. Matisse screams, drawing the attention of the soldiers.

Ashe tries to motivate her but an idea occurs to her. She sends Ashe on to find Idotris and tell him to lead the children to the library where Galladon and Karata will be. Hoping it will work she begins drawing Aon Ashe, the symbol for light. The soldiers advance after a slight hesitation but are blinded by a brilliant light when she completes the symbol with the chasm line. Then she runs. Into the slime of Elantris proper Matisse goes, picking her way through the streets until she finds herself surrounded by Fjordell soldiers. One of the soldiers grabs her but a well placed kick causes him to slip on the sludge and release her. Her leg now damaged and unhealing she limps away from the soldiers still fighting to upright themselves. Finding Dashe's body and the blaze of New Elantris in flames she realizes she's gone in a circle.

Dashe repeats the mantra of a Hoed, his mind broken. Instead of running from the approaching soldiers, Matisse holds on to Dashe's body, not wanting to flee. The Fjordell soldier interrogates her as to the location of the children, threatening her with pain before something happens: the ground shakes and suddenly Matisse feels warm, her skin turning silvery and her wounds healing. The Fjordell man is taken aback but still intent on causing her pain. Elantris is returning to life, but she is going to die at this man's hands. However, with the city's healing came also Dashe's, as he announces before killing the Fjordell man with the same sword that had impaled Dashe not long ago.

Ashe finishes his story; Raoden understands that Ashe wanted to stay with the children until the crisis was over, explaining his absence. Raoden then inquires to Ashe which of the two Seons he sent Dashe for his services he gave to Matisse, expecting it to be Ati. Instead, Matisse has been given Aeo which Raoden considers equally appropriate.

Aeo means bravery.


Brandon got the idea to write this story in January 2006, as he was dating his wife Emily. Emily mentions one of her eighth grade students has done a book report on Elantris. Matisse, the student, had done an outstanding job on her book report. There were detailed bios of the characters and even some materials you would find in the book. Brandon was moved by her report and wrote this companion story, with Matisse’s name as the lead character in honor to her. When Brandon and Emily were married, Matisse gave the book report to Brandon as a wedding gift.[Citation needed]


  1. The Hope of Elantris
    Brandon's website - 2006-01#
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